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Poster: light into ashes Date: Oct 2, 2012 9:47pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Dire Wolf 1969

I think those early Casey Jones with their intro jams are pretty cool - it could have gone differently. But they tightened it up instead of loosening it.

I don't know when Hunter got a place of his own, or just how long they lived together... I think we can safely say, the Workingman's and many American Beauty songs were written then. (Some of the AB songs Hunter wrote on a trip to England.)

But when we're talking about Jerry being inspired by Hunter's initial melodic ideas, we're probably talking about just a few tunes. Here are a couple quotes:
Hunter wrote in '75, "The Grateful Dead have never required melodies from me (coals to Newcastle), and consequently I have a great stock of 'orphan tunes' in my head which I used to write my lyrics to. My tune writing does not approach the richness and subltety of Jerry's."
From the 1991 interview -
Hunter: I always wrote my own melodies, but after a few years Jerry got to the point where he said, 'Will you stop giving me melodies, because they just confuse me and I can't get them out of my head.'
Garcia: That's true. A lot of times his melodies would be so catchy: 'God I can't hear this any way except with his melody!' Sometimes they were perfect, though, and I didn't fool with them - like Must Have Been the Roses is one. That's totally Hunter's melody.
Hunter: Actually, you stuck a minor chord in there which makes it ever so much more powerful.

We'd have to figure out on a case-by-case basis which musical ideas might have come from Hunter. Some songs, he just provided lyrics without a tune & Garcia did the rest. Some songs, he provided a musical setting & Garcia changed it - for instance, Black Peter: "I wrote this as a brisk piece like Kershaw's 'Louisiana Man.' Garcia took it seriously, though, dressing it in subtle changes and a mournful tempo. The bridge verse was written after the restructuring of the piece, and reflects the additional depth of possibility provided for the song by his treatment."
Other songs, the music came from the band & Hunter wrote the lyrics afterward - like Uncle John's Band or Box of Rain, where they gave him a tape of the instrumental, and he wrote the words to that.
So there were a variety of ways for a Dead song to be born!

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Poster: Arck Date: Oct 5, 2012 6:04am
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Dire Wolf 1969

As I recall Hunter provides a very nice, albeit not particularly useful, description of their songwriting approach when living in Larkspur in the Garcia ('72) remastered CD, with specific reference to them writing Deal and Loser on the same day.

Great album - probably my second favourite GD-related studio album, second only to Workingman's Dead.

Thanks for another brilliant post LiA.

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Poster: light into ashes Date: Oct 5, 2012 12:49pm
Forum: GratefulDead Subject: Re: Dire Wolf 1969

Ah, I'd never seen the liner notes to that - so that would've been at the end of 1970.
(It was in mid-'71 when Garcia had to move to a new house.)

There could probably be a good compendium made of all the Hunter/Garcia descriptions of their songwriting process over the years. (Not that I'm about to do it!)